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Cover Reveal: The Witch Isn’t Dead

Previously, on “All My Plot Bunnies”…

“I'm releasing a box set of Afterverse stories revolving around the Wicked Witch of the West! They'll be free to my email subscribers, and will be available sometime this summer!”

“Malcolm got dragged to the Emerald City against his will and became a reluctant surrogate dad to a young Wizard of Oz!”

“Todd had a whirlwind romance (ha ha) with the Wicked Witch of the West before he met Amy!”

“The story of Cordelia's first boyfriend is finally going to be revealed!”

“I got married last weekend!”

OK, fine, that last one was a complete lie. But I had you going there for a second, didn't I? Heh heh.

I suppose you're wondering why I've called you here today, since I've already revealed prequels to all my current series. What more could I possibly have in the works?

This.

The Witch Isn't Dead

“Dragons in Oz? Really? I mean, I like the concept, but don't you think it's a little…out there?”

While auditioning actors and preparing the script for an independently-produced Wizard of Oz movie in the city of Newchapter, Arizona, Samir Naresh and his team run into some unusual problems. The actors filming the screen tests are getting a little too deep into their roles. The concept art for the characters and creatures is a little too good–so good that it's jumping right off the page and into real life. Granted, this weirdness is helping to offset Samir's budget limitations…but it's starting to get unnerving.

Given that he spends a fair amount of time in the form of a living stone gargoyle, David Blackfire knows a thing or two about magic. So when Samir asks him for help, he's happy to oblige. But when he investigates, he discovers that the threat he's facing is far more personal than he had expected. The mysterious woman behind the strange phenomena met his grandfather, the great dragon Malcolm Blackfire, many years ago, and history is now repeating itself in a different world and a different time. The Wicked Witch Hespera is back, and this time, she's not taking any prisoners.

Trapped in a city slowly descending into madness, David and Malcolm must fight alone against Hespera…or no world will be safe from her vengeance.

 

Now for some explanations!

There is a version of our own world in the continuity of the Afterverse…or maybe it is our own world. The people of the Afterverse call it the Nineteenth Parallel. This reality is infested by the Neverwolves, creatures who were designed to destroy not only magic and monsters, but even belief in those things. Thanks to them, hardly anyone in the Nineteenth Parallel is aware that magic is real. The American Gargoyle series is set in this world in the present day, and specifically focuses on the city of Newchapter, where quite a few magical creatures have managed to survive the Neverwolves' occupation.

But what is the American Gargoyle series? Basically, it's my first foray into contemporary urban fantasy, though I'm adding a few unique twists to the usual conventions of the genre. David Blackfire, who has the ability to shapeshift into a winged stone monster, doesn't really fight monsters per se, as is the case with many other urban-fantasy protagonists. Instead, he fights to protect those monsters from the Neverwolves. American Gargoyle reverses the formula of many of the paranormal-and/or-magical-investigation stories you've encountered before, like The X-Files, Warehouse 13, and The Dresden Files. David doesn't care if people find out about magic and monsters–if anything, he wants them to. And fortunately, he has his grandfather Malcolm to back him up as he watches over Newchapter from the shadows. There's a strong superhero vibe to this series. In particular, I've drawn inspiration from the animated series Batman Beyond. I loved the unique dynamic between the old, grumpy Bruce Wayne and the young, wise-cracking Terry McGinnis on that show, and there's something of that in the relationship between Malcolm and David.

Book 1 of American Gargoyle won't be out for a while yet, but The Witch Isn't Dead should give you a good idea of what the series will be like. This story will also wrap up some of the plot threads stretching back to the beginning of The Emerald Cycle in The Dragon Behind the Curtain.

And that's all the news for now! In April, you can expect further announcements on release dates for upcoming books. New releases from Crockett & Crane, Beaumont & Beasley, and Blackfire are all on the way in the near future, plus a couple of nonfiction books. Keep watching this blog for further updates!

Oh, and if you're wondering who David's parents are…well, you can probably guess. Wings. Stone. The clues are there.

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Comments (18)

AAAAHHHHH!
AWESOME!
These are going to be so epic! I can hardly wait!

Dude. This sounds FABULOUS.

Storm it. This was supposed to reply to the whole post.

Thanks!! I’m excited about it.

Thank you!! 😀

Wow… I’m so excited! A story in the Nineteenth Parallel??? I was wondering if you’d return to this.

Thanks! Yeah, I’ve been planning to do something with it for a while, though it took me some time to come up with a strong enough main character to make the concept work.

*EEP*

*AAH*

*YAY!*

🙂

Thanks!! 😀

AHHH!!! I know who his parents are, I know it already!!! And it makes me so happy!! (Of course I could be wrong… but I’m pretty sure I’m not!!!) 😃😃
I wonder how Malcolm is gonna feel about THAT, though… what with that whole “dragon elitist” attitude he often gives into…

But I’m really intrigued to know more about this series overall!! I’ve not read much in the form of “urban fantasy”. Most of what I see under that label are weird vampire and werewolf romance stories, which aren’t really my cup of tea (though I did have fun skimming through the Artemis Fowl series not too long ago).
But I do enjoy a good superhero story, and given David’s family and the fact that I’m always up for a neat new non-human hero character, I’m sure I’ll enjoy American Gargoyle!! Can’t wait to learn more about it! 😀

Ha ha, nope, you’re not wrong! And trust me, Malcolm has no excuse to be THAT much of an elitist… 😀 He may look down his nose at other species, but at the end of the day, he doesn’t oppose things like marriage between them and dragons.

Yeah, urban fantasy is pretty broad, and seems to lean too heavily on the vampire/werewolf stuff too frequently (though there are quite a few good books in the genre). Actually, a lot of titles filed under UF on Amazon belong in the paranormal romance genre instead. They also tend to be a little samey in terms of tropes, copying Jim Butcher instead of doing anything new with the formula. I want to add something to the mix that’s family-friendly like my other works and that features a protagonist who’s not going out of his way to be a jerk all the time. American Gargoyle is going to be a lot more light-hearted and less gritty than the usual UF fare.

When I read David BLACKFIRE I may have made an odd squeaking noise but MORE BLACKFIRES!!! And oh my word, I DO KNOW WHO HIS PARENTS ARE. *more squeaking noises*

This story is SO unexpected, but I love it! An Afterverse story in OUR world??? YES PLEASE. And I’m loooving the concept of a protagonist who DOESN’T want to keep magic a secret. YISSS. Break the stereotypes!

This whole thing excites me greatly! I’m looking forward to ALL these. But wow, Kyle, how do you keep up with all these different story threads? Are you sure you’re not part dragon??? *eyes you suspiciously*

LOL, my aunt asks me that all the time. (About the keeping track of plot threads, not the dragon part, though she’ll probably start asking that next. XD) I do write everything down and refer frequently to my notes; I definitely couldn’t keep all this straight in my head. Character birthdays and hair colors alone are a pain to remember.

I’m so glad you like this idea! I’m looking forward to developing it further. I think it has the potential to be a really fun series. Also, good job figuring out David’s family tree. 😀

CAUTIOUSLY OPTIMISTIC ABOUT ALL OF THIS

O_O

Ha ha!! XD Me too. Though this series isn’t going to be as different from my other books as it may seem, so in theory, it shouldn’t be that big a risk from a creative standpoint. If anything, it’s going to be less serialized and more light-hearted then my other stuff. (Not that those books aren’t light-hearted, but I’m putting a particularly strong emphasis on humor in this one.)

DUDE! Just when I thought you had reached maximum awesomeness, you throw this out!!! THIS IS GONNA BE AWESOME!!!

This isn’t even my final awesomeness!!

(I have no idea what the context of that reference is, but I know it’s a thing.) XD

Thank you!! 😀 I’m very happy that you’re excited about this.

You just keep getting more awesome every time I see you do something. Thank you for what you write. I love your stories!

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